Eli ‘Paperboy’ Reed


Come And Get It Parlophone ***

From a Boston high school to a Mississippi Delta bar, from church gigs to Brooklyn clubs, Eli “Paperboy” Reed struggled through two albums of kindly ersatz soul to this, his third (and his debut major label recording), finally facing up to the challenge of channelling the soulful sensibilities of Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Sam Cooke and Al Green. The result is a terrific gathering of pretty pop songs infused with gritty resilience. Reed’s lyrical modus operandiis to write conversationally – turns of phrase that snag the ear and hook you in, blended with horn-filled arrangements and Stax-influenced rhythms. He’s onto a good thing: back-combing his hair to the sound of authentic soul while digging grooves that the likes of Mark Ronson, Amy Winehouse and Plan B are currently staking a claim to. Smart guy, classy sideburns, often thrilling soul. See elipaperboyreed.com

Download tracks: Young Girl, You Can Run